Piccianello Condition (2014) – sound installation / music composition for a public festival, Matera, Italy

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Piccianello Condition is a musical composition and public sound installation created for Una giornata a Piccianello festival in Matera, Italy, 2014. The piece was broadcast through the loudspeakers of a derelict open-door shopping centre in Piccianello, where the main festival took place.

Piccianello has been a neglected neighbourhood in Matera, and the purpose of the festival was to initiate a discussion about the revitalization of the area. I happened to be at an art residency in Matera at the time, and was asked by the organizers if I could create something for the event.

The composition features voices of older residents of the Piccianello neighbourhood reminiscing about their time there, collected by another participating artist, architect Lucia Caistor-Arendar; these spoken passages were then set to the music that I created in situ, using local sound marks such as church bells and birds as compositional material. My aim was to create a contemplative soundscape that was at the same time pastoral and urban, nostalgic and futuristic, wishful and hopeful.

Music on YouTube. This version excludes the voices of the local residents due to their site-specific nature. Original video by Riikka Keränen, treatments by Ilpo Jauhiainen. Filmed in the Sassi di Matera, Italy, May 2014.

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